December 2003 nor'easter

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December 2003 nor'easter
Category 3 "Major" (RSI: 9.40)
Surface analysis 20031207.gif
Surface weather analysis of the storm on December 7, 2003
Type Extratropical cyclone
Winter storm
Formed December 5, 2003
Dissipated December 8, 2003
Lowest pressure 992 mb (29.29 inHg)
Maximum snowfall or ice accretion 52 inches (130 cm) in northern New Hampshire
Damage Unknown
Total fatalities 13 total
Areas affected Midwestern United States, Eastern United States (especially the Mid-Atlantic and New England states)

The December 2003 New England snowstorm was a severe nor'easter that impacted the Eastern United States during the first week of the month. It produced heavy snowfall throughout the New England and Mid-Atlantic regions, exceeding 40 inches (100 cm) in northern New England.[1][2] The cyclone had complex origins, involving several individual weather disturbances. An area of low pressure primarily associated with the southern branch of the jet stream spread light precipitation across portions of the Midwest and Southeast. The low reached the coast on December 5 and continued to produce snow throughout the Mid-Atlantic. Another system involving the northern branch of the jet stream merged with the initial storm, causing another coastal storm to develop. This storm soon became the primary feature as it intensified and moved northeastward. It reached Cape Cod on December 6, but became nearly stationary through the morning of December 7.[3] It had finally dissipated by December 8.[4]

Conditions surrounding the storm allowed for several bands of heavy snowfall to set up over New York State and New England, including a small area of 4 in (100 mm) per hour snowfall rates in the Hudson Valley. As a result of extremely cold temperatures over the region, snowfall accumulations were generally significant and broke several daily records. At Albany, New York, 12.5 in (320 mm) of snow fell in just one day. Locations affected by the storm commonly picked up 17 to 24 in (430 to 610 mm), with totals occasionally exceeding 30 in (760 mm).[3]

The event led to widespread travel delays from Washington, D.C. to Boston, and around 13 people lost their lives because of the storm. 35.6 of snow inches fell just 14 miles north of Boston in the city of Peabody, Massachusetts.[5] The nor'easter was among the largest early-season winter storms on record to affect the major East Coast cities. Many areas reported blizzard-like conditions.[1]

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  1. ^ a b Grumm, Richard H. "The Megalopolitan Snow Storm of 5-7 December 2003" (PDF). State College, Pennsylvania. National Weather Service. p. 13. Retrieved 2018-07-03.
  2. ^ "Rank: 2 | 7 December 2003 | Score: 210.21". Lyndon State College. Retrieved 2009-12-11.
  3. ^ a b "Major Nor'easter: Saturday-Sunday December 6-7, 2003". WRBG CBS 6 Albany. Archived from the original on 2010-12-23. Retrieved 2009-12-11.
  4. ^ "Daily Weather Maps for December 8, 2003". Hydrometeorological Preciction Center. Retrieved 2009-12-11.
  5. ^ Associated Press (December 8, 2003). "Buried Northeast starts digging". USA Today. Retrieved 2009-12-11.

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